Dolmenwood Tales #14. The Chalice, we f***ing did it!

The last session of our Dolmenwood campaign with Old School Essentials has been epic. We have risked a lot, but we have the chalice now. Guess what we will do with it… As usual, the summary is not mine, but the author DoronTheElf has granted me the chance to publish them.

PCs:

  • Mallomahr, the Dolmenwood Elf
  • Baldrick, the Friar
  • Vardast Blackwall, the Paladin [My character]
  • Crinkledink, the Woodgrue
  • Berwick, the Hunter

Henchmen Hired:

  • Theune the ‘Tome Keeper’, 1st-level magic-user. Graduate of the Royal Institute of Physicks and Sorcerers in Castle Brackenwold. Loyal to Mallomahr.
  • Breyir the ‘Headlopper’, 1st-level fighter. Trained in Prigwort. Loyal to Crinkledink. Personality: prankster.
  • Griya the ‘Braggart to Burn’, heavy footman. Personality: braggart.

Read it with the recommended soundtrack

3d of Haggryme (The Fading of Winter), day 19 at Dolmenwood

After the encounter with the spectral hunter and his hounds you noticed a giant figure coming at you from the back of a corridor. The figure was singing a song about snapping the bones of thieves… It was the mutagenic ogre! The ogre swang his club but with no luck, he fell dead quickly. His breath had the most horrible stench imaginable but you managed to stand your ground and defeat him. You took from his neck a chain with 1 large and 4 small keys. Berwick also took an ogre tooth as a trophy. 

Mallomahr went spying towards the north and close to the river where he saw two troglodytes fishing by the river, one named Tomfool the other Nancy Fingers. They were talking about their dead friend Old Gregg who used to be a bit of a bully… Theune cast a sleep spell on them. You tied them up and moved one of them to the Ogre’s room for interrogation. The troglodytes said that they were innocent fishermen keeping themselves to themselves… Tomfool told you about some dwarves living in the south-east area of the underground. He said that if there is a garden then it should be somewhere in the eastern areas. Finally, he told you about their lair and their general love of eating fish… You briefly checked the troglodytes’ lair. 

Moving further east there was a corridor with an archway (with tree carvings). A dwarf corpse was sprawled on the floor. You also spotted black, thorned ivy covering the walls for 30’ east of the arch. You inspected the corpse and you found that he seemed to have died of asphyxiation: a cord of black vine was wrapped tightly around his throat. Using a sword you cut this piece of vine and took it with you. You found 20gp and 42sp wrapped up in the toe of his left boot. In a pocket, a scribbled note: “The river ghouls could be tricked out of their treasure?

You decided to use oil to burn the vines. You lit up three flasks of oil and threw them unto the vines but to no effect… It seemed that fire couldn’t harm the vines.

You decided then to explore another room. You moved south towards a corridor with two statues, one in the east alcove and one in the west alcove. In the east alcove there was a weeping fish-man statue (weeping milky tears). In the west alcove there was a weeping mantis-man statue (weeping milky tears). There was also a smashed crossbow, discarded on the floor between the statues. 

Continuing south the corridor ended up in a room. The room had a shiny, metal floor. There was a giant spherical boulder (10′ diameter) on the floor at the west end of the room. There were also six levers in the south wall (numbered 1–6). In the same wall there was a brass plaque: “Authorized Personnel Only!”.

Crinkledink had a clever idea about the black vines! He diluted a bit the potion of gaseous form into his waterskin. He then pierced the waterskin in places to create a sprinkler, and he started spraying the vines from afar. Indeed, some of the vines turned into gas while others seemed to wither. Only a last batch of black vines remained. Vardast stepped forward and started slashing the vines. The vine lashed out at Vardast but with no success!

The corridor was now open. Further down the corridor there was one path going north (stairs going up). Past the path the corridor continued straight ending in a room. The walls of the corridor were again covered with black, thorned ivy but there were also jet black fruits (tomato-like) dangling from the ivy. Crinkledink cut and packed seven of them. 

You moved towards the end of the corridor and into the room. Large black plants filed the room (some 6’ tall). Black, thorned ivy with black fruits covered the walls. The floor was rich earth soil (jet black). As Crinkledink was exploring the room, he felt a sudden sense of dread and piercing cold; a shadow attacked him! You attacked back and thanks to Vardast’s magic weapon the shadow gardener fell dead.

The Gardener

In the room, you found watering cans tied onto frayed ropes as well as an engraved silver box (50gp) that contained a fine red dust. You also found a locked door behind overgrown plants. Muffled rushing sounds were coming behind the door. Berwick and Vardast tried to force it open but with no success.

[Rules: Using your tools and equipment you can open it but it will take you an hour]

You went back to the corridor where suddenly a swirling, purple vortex manifested in the air. Berwick shot an arrow towards the vortex; the arrow disappeared… Theune suspected that this was probably some form of portal/teleportation magic.

Back in the corridor, you took the path to the north, with steps/stairs going up. You entered a natural cavern (40’ high) which seemed like a subterranean jungle. Jet black plants and trees (30’ tall) filled the room. You could occasionally hear gentle chirruping sounds from the trees). The floor was rich earth soil (jet black).

Mallomahr spotted yellow eyes in the branches. The light of the torch revealed many small creatures who were peeking down at you from the treetops. They were baby-like, with dark green skin (moss-like), and needle fangs… Mallomahr and Crinkleding sensed that they were fey! 

In the middle of the room, there was a giant bronze statue (25’ high) of a man with clerical clothes in a benevolent posture. 

At the back of the room there was a stone plinth (4′ high) bathed in golden light. Upon the plinth there was a chalice. 

You started searching the room and the statue. In the soil, you found a small hand mirror. The mirror was engraved on its back with prayers and incantations against the undead (written in common).

As you were digging the soil, a hand emerged with the rest of the body apparently entombed deeper in the soil… The hand was moving and was trying to break free from the soil… The hand was emaciated, with an almost-hairless, mottled, decaying hide stretched tight over its bones.

You used two oil flask and lit up the area left and right of the door of the room. Crinkledink rushed to grasp the chalice and to put the Drune stone upon the plinth. The fey creatures jumped from the trees and came to the defence of the chalice… One of them tried to bit Crinkledink but instead smashed his shield into pieces… Using sling, bow, and sword you killed one of the creatures and injured another one. Crinkledink pushed forward with the chalice and you fled from the subterranean jungle as Theune was lighting up the entrance. 

[Rules: I might have messed up a bit with the combat here… I would like to have run the combat with slightly more granularity and attention to tactical detail but I guess I was a bit tired (physically) and had a mind block…]

You ran for the exit. The goat-man and goat-woman guards threw the rope and pulled you out asking you if anything interesting happened down there… 

Experience

387.49 per character
193.74 per retainer

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